Articles Posted in Fatal Trucking Accidents

Sometimes, no matter how diligent we are on the road, things beyond our control may take place and result in devastating consequences. Despite being a careful, proactive, and alert driver, it is often impossible to control the actions of others. Factors outside of our control that may cause an accident are often exacerbated when the accident involves a large commercial vehicle or truck. Thus, Maryland drivers should understand the distinctions between accidents involving commercial trucks and regular trucks or SUVs before proceeding with their legal claims.

According to a recent news report, a commercial truck driver is facing 41 charges following a major truck accident that left four dead and ten others injured. The truck driver, during his first solo trip, was driving through the mountains on his own despite having little experience navigating the terrain. While on the road, the truck driver realized his brakes had given out. Despite doing his best to remain on the shoulder and out of traffic, he crashed into a large trailer, which he hoped would slow down the trajectory of his truck after the crash. Upon impact, the truck driver lost control and four people died instantly.

During the trial, the prosecution argued that the truck driver had multiple chances to prevent the accident and did not take them. In response, the defense argued that the truck driver was simply at the mercy of mechanical failures of the truck, and lost control without any good options. In addition, the defense reiterated the preventative steps the truck driver took, such as calling his boss, roughly 40 minutes before the crash, to ask for advice on how to proceed moving forward since his brakes were faulty. The outcome of the case will ultimately fall into the hands of the jury.

Maryland drivers are required to call 911 whenever a driver is involved in a Maryland truck accident or any type of automobile accident. Under Maryland’s Transportation Code, a driver who is involved in an accident that results in another person being injured must immediately pull over as close as possible to the scene of the crash and remain at the scene until medical assistance is arranged and information is exchanged. A driver must reasonably assist anyone who is injured and arrange transportation for medical treatment, provide their name, address, and the registration number of the vehicle, and provide their license if requested. Any driver who fails to do stop and stay at the scene is subject to fines up to $10,000 and up to 10 years in jail. However, despite strict laws, hit-and-run accidents still occur.

What Should I Do After a Maryland Hit and Run Accident?

Victims of Maryland hit and run accidents should take down any information about the vehicle and the driver that fled the scene, including a description of the vehicle and the driver and license plate number or other information. Victims should also call 911 and report the accident to law enforcement. Victims should also seek medical assistance if it is needed. If law enforcement is able to track down the hit-and-run driver, a victim may be able to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver and recover financial compensation. Proof that the driver fled the scene may be useful evidence in a civil lawsuit. Even if the driver is not found, victims may be able to recover compensation by filing an insurance claim under their uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, which are required in Maryland. Victims may be able to recover compensation for property damages, medical expenses, lost wages, mental suffering, and more.

The death of a family member after a Maryland truck accident is a terrible tragedy and the aftermath can be overwhelming. Nothing can replace a family member, but Maryland law allows certain family members to see financial compensation if any person or entity was at fault. A Maryland wrongful death claim may be filed by a spouse, a parent, or a child of the accident victim. In a case where the victim has no living spouse, parents, or children, another person may file a wrongful death claim if they were substantially dependent upon the victim and are related by blood or marriage. This claim allows qualifying family members to recover financial compensation for the losses that they suffered and to hold wrongful people and entities responsible for the victim’s death. Only one Maryland wrongful death claim may be filed based on a victim’s death.

What Are Wrongful Death Damages in Maryland?

Qualifying family members can recover compensation for expenses including financial losses due to the victim’s death, as well as for the emotional toll, including mental anguish and the loss of companionship. Generally, a Maryland wrongful death claim in Maryland must be filed within three years of the victim’s death. A wrongful death case also holds negligent drivers accountable for their actions, which can make the roads a safer place by discouraging dangerous driving behavior.

Bus Driver Drove Wildly to Quiet Teens Before Fatal Crash

According to one news source, a bus driver’s dangerous driving led to a fatal bus rash. The bus driver was apparently trying to keep teen passengers quiet by driving wildly, according to a passenger. The bus was transporting a group of teenagers from a youth group back from a field trip. According to a counselor, the driver was angry that the kids were making a lot of noise and was driving erratically to try to get them to be quiet.

Continue reading ›

Interstates and highways are often the scenes of serious truck accidents and, unfortunately, claim many lives each year. At high speeds, trucks can easily cause multi-vehicle crashes when drivers are distracted or fall asleep at the wheel. Losing a loved one in a truck accident is devastating and shocking, and family members often don’t know what their options are or how to pursue them. Under state law, family members can recover damages to help pay for the costly and painful impact of losing a loved one in a Maryland truck accident.

In a recent accident, a careless truck driver was driving one morning when he collided with multiple passing cars, leaving a father and his young son dead, and many others injured. According to a news report, the series of events started when the semi-truck driver rear-ended a car and then continued to drive for at least a mile down the interstate, hitting four more cars and injuring others in the process. The surviving drivers and passengers were taken to nearby hospitals. The driver was taken into police custody soon after the collisions and faces criminal charges in addition to whatever civil claims the victims and their families may file.

A fatal car accident can be a shock and surviving family members may not know where to turn or what to do to get justice for their loved ones. While most people are familiar with criminal charges that reckless drivers may face for causing an accident, they may not know that there are often civil remedies available to them as well that can help recover financially, even though nothing can bring back their loved one.

Trucking accidents often lead to serious or fatal injuries because of the strength and power of the vehicles involved. Victims of Maryland trucking accidents may be dealing with debilitating injuries, the loss of employment, and even the loss of a loved one. If another individual or entity is responsible for injuries arising from a Maryland trucking accident, victims can file claims against those responsible to recover damages for their losses.

In a civil claim, all damages must be proven at trial, unless the parties agree to settle the claim prior to trial. Damages that are recoverable depend on the facts and circumstances of the case, but generally, damages can be recovered for the injuries and losses that the plaintiff suffered due to the defendant’s wrongful actions. Compensatory damages refer to the damages that compensate the victim for the losses suffered. In general, compensatory damages can be divided into two categories: economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are those with a fixed dollar value, such as the cost of medical treatment, lost wages, the cost of physical therapy, and transportation costs. Non-economic damages do not have a fixed dollar value, such as mental suffering, loss of companionship, and loss of parental or filial care. Economic damages do not have a limit, but there is generally a limit on non-economic damages in Maryland accident cases. Punitive damages are also available in some cases. In a Maryland injury case, punitive damages may be awarded if the defendant acted with actual malice, or with knowing and deliberate wrongdoing. Punitive damages are awarded in cases to serve as a deterrent for others or as a punishment for the defendant’s malicious actions.

A plaintiff must prove damages at trial by a “preponderance of the evidence,” though they must prove punitive damages by a higher standard of “clear and convincing evidence.” In a wrongful death case, the family member who files the case may recover damages to compensate the family member for the loss of their loved one.

In March 2019, a fatal Maryland truck accident killed a 65-year-old man and a 7-year-old boy in Hanford County, Maryland. According to the Baltimore Sun, around 7 AM one morning a tractor-trailer truck was traveling south on Route 24 in Bel Air when it crashed through a line of traffic that was stopped at a red light at the intersection with Ring Factory Road. The truck then burst into flames as it came to rest. The crash caused a pinball effect, sending cars into each other, creating some awful wreckage. Many individuals were left with significant injuries. For example, one woman suffered a traumatic brain injury in addition to severing a nerve in her head. And, tragically, the man and the second-grader were killed.

While this Maryland truck accident made serious headlines in 2019, it fell out of the public eye in the ensuing years. But recently, the case was in the news again, as the criminal trial for the truck driver, a 51-year-old man, began. The case highlights the interesting relationship between the criminal and civil law systems in Maryland. When someone drives negligently, or recklessly, and causes the death of others in a serious truck accident such as this one, they may be subject to both criminal and civil liability.

This criminal trial illustrates how one can be held criminally liable. The driver in the case is charged with two counts of gross negligence manslaughter by motor vehicle, two counts of criminal negligence manslaughter by motor vehicle, and four counts of causing serious injury while using a cellphone. Prosecutors are making their case in front of a jury, trying to prove that the defendant was grossly negligent and should be held criminally liable.

Losing a loved one is one of the most painful experiences imaginable. But, unfortunately, many Maryland families find themselves facing this reality each year as the result of a Maryland truck accident. Because of the size of semi-trucks, Maryland truck accidents can have devastating consequences, causing severe bodily injury and even death. Tragically, some individuals may find themselves in an impossibly difficult situation: mourning the death of a loved one while trying to recover physically from injuries suffered in the same accident.

For example, take a recent tragic semi-truck crash. According to a local news report, the crash occurred on Monday afternoon when a woman was driving her two children—a two-year-old daughter and six-month-old son—when she was rear-ended by a semi-truck. Police say the semi-truck driver wrongfully ran through a stoplight and was at fault in the crash. The woman and her daughter were both flown to local hospitals with severe to life-threatening injuries following the crash. Tragically, her two-month-old son did not survive.

The family is now in the devastating situation of mourning their loss while trying to recover themselves. While the mother, fortunately, is doing well, the two-year-old daughter suffered multiple fractures to her skull and had to undergo surgery for a broken femur. She is in stable condition, but injuries of that extent take a long time to heal, and the medical bills can add up quickly. The financial situation can be exacerbated by the funeral and burial costs for the infant, and the lost wages both parents may have incurred by needing to miss work. While the health and safety of those who survived are of course of the utmost importance, the family likely has realized the significant financial toll that truck accidents can cause.

Inclement weather can cause significant concerns while driving. This past winter has shown how serious these weather concerns can be, causing all sorts of Maryland truck accidents. Even in winter weather, many truck drivers do not have the option of not driving, and so they will continue along the interstate. But slippery conditions, snowbanks, snowplows, and poor visibility can cause significant concerns.

For example, take a recent day with inclement weather. According to a local news article covering the incident, inclement weather at the time caused serious visibility concerns, and several crashes occurred. One notable crash was a 22-vehicle pile-up that left one individual dead and many others injured. That same day, a semi-truck traveling along the Interstate hit a snowplow, causing it to overturn and roll into a ditch. An eyewitness of this truck accident spoke to reporters afterward, saying that the visibility was low and whiteout conditions caused confusion and crashes. He said, “visibility cut and then all of a sudden I was seeing the semi in front of me” and the crash happened out of nowhere. These crashes demonstrate the danger that driving in wintery weather conditions can pose.

While spring is here and the weather is warming up, meaning drivers can expect summer weather to cause fewer Maryland truck accidents than in the winter months, many Maryland families may still be feeling the impact of a winter truck accident. Unfortunately, the damage caused by these accidents can last weeks, months, or even years, depending on the severity of the injuries. Individuals who were injured in the wintry conditions of this past winter may still be suffering, recovering from their injuries and paying off intensive medical bills. Individuals in this situation may be struggling to get by and move past the physical and financial damage that was caused. It is important that they know that they can recover through a Maryland personal injury lawsuit. These lawsuits, filed against the person responsible for causing the accident, can provide plaintiffs with significant monetary damages to cover lost wages, medical bills, physical therapy costs, pain and suffering, and other costs. These damages, depending on the extent of the harm caused, can be calculated in the thousands or even the millions. Most importantly, the damages allow for plaintiffs to take the first step towards serious recovery and to not fall into debt as the result of an accident someone else caused.

The inherent nature of driving on public roadways involves some element of risk, as motorists, despite their best efforts, cannot always avoid accidents. This is especially true when the accident is the result of another’s negligence. Although accidents range in severity, Maryland truck accidents tend to result in the most catastrophic injuries to drivers, passengers, and bystanders. Amongst the most dangerous vehicles, 18-wheelers, large semi-trucks, and tourist buses pose the biggest threat to those on the road. The likelihood of serious and potentially fatal injuries significantly increases when two of these vehicles collide.

For example, a prominent news source reported a devastating bus and truck crash that took the lives of 21 individuals. Although the accident took place in another country, it illustrates a situation that can happen on any major roadway in Maryland. According to sources, while a bus overturned while trying to pass a truck. The bus slammed into the truck while negotiating a pass. The collision resulted in an explosive fire, and nearly 20 people suffered complete and fatal burns. Among the deceased were the drivers of both vehicles. State officials explained that the road did not have working traffic lights or signs because it was under construction.

In addition to 18-wheelers and large buses, many other vehicles pose a serious danger to other motorists. Many truck accidents involve dump trucks, tanker trucks, livestock carriers, moving vehicles, and garbage trucks. Moreover, with the overwhelming increase in online ordering and demand for prompt delivery, accidents involving mail delivery trucks have been on the rise. Similarly, emergency responder vehicles such as fire trucks and ambulances pose a risk to drivers, as they are generally rushing to their destination.

Truck accidents happen every week all across the country, including many accidents in Maryland. These accidents vary in severity—some may be minor, leaving drivers with minor injuries, if any at all. Others may be more serious, leading to severe bodily injury or even death. Every so often, a particularly horrendous truck accident makes national headlines. Just this month, one of those accidents occurred on the highway in Southern California. The New York Times reported on this devastating accident, which was responsible for at least thirteen deaths.

According to the New York Times’ coverage, the accident occurred early one Tuesday morning. The crash was shocking. According to officials, a Ford Expedition S.U.V. was driving along the highway, traveling west, with twenty-five people packed inside of it. The S.U.V. pulled in front of a tractor-trailer, headed north, in an intersection, causing a collision that led to the S.U.V. almost wrapped around the front of the truck. By the time emergency crews arrived at the scene, twelve people were already dead. Some had been ejected from the S.U.V. due to the force of the collision and were on the pavement. Others were inside the vehicle. Several people were taken to the hospital with injuries, and one later died. The victims from the crash ranged in age from 20 to 55. Officials still are not sure what exactly caused the crash, or why the S.U.V. pulled in front of the truck. They are also concerned about how many people were inside the S.U.V., which has a maximum legal capacity of seven or eight.

This accident shows how just one reckless action—in this case, pulling in front of another vehicle in an intersection—can have devastating consequences. Over a dozen people lost their lives, presumably because of one driver’s actions. Accidents like this are on the severe end of the range of Maryland truck accidents that occur each year, but still raise awareness of how devastating the actions can be. Each Maryland resident should remember that when they are injured in a truck accident, big or small, the state’s law allows them to file a personal injury lawsuit against whoever was responsible. These lawsuits can result in significant monetary damages awarded to crash victims, to compensate them for their pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and more. In fatal crashes like the one above, families may be able to recover that on behalf of their deceased love ones. These lawsuits cannot undo the damage done in Maryland truck accidents, but they can provide families with monetary compensation to assist them in their recovery.

Contact Information